Election 2016

"Binary Choices" Like Trump or Clinton Are So 20th Century

Republican #NeverTrumpers won't back their party's nominee but will they support Gary Johnson?

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South Park, Comedy Central

It's happening: Stalwart Republicans in the #NeverTrump camp are vocalizing their discontent with their party's nominee even more loudly after the Republican National Convention.

Here's The Weekly Standard's Stephen Hayes, also a top analyst on Fox News, laying it out for all to see in a piece titled "Donald Trump Is Crazy, and So Is the GOP for Embracing Him":

Yes, Donald Trump is crazy. And, yes, the Republican party owns his insanity.

Fewer than twelve hours after Republicans rallied in support of his nomination for the presidency, Trump once again implied that Rafael Cruz, Ted Cruz's father, was involved in the JFK assassination. At a press availability during an event to thank campaign volunteers Friday morning, Trump revived suggestions that the elder Cruz was an associate of Lee Harvey Oswald, Kennedy's assassin, and that they two were together months before the assassination.

What's particularly interesting to me isn't the vitriol directed at Trump but the rebuff indirectly given to GOP Speaker Paul Ryan, who spoke at the convention and has described the presidential race as a "binary choice" between Republicans and Democrats.

Here's Hayes stiff-arming that notion:

Trump supporters would pretend that your refusal to support Trump means you're backing Hillary Clinton. It's an absurd argument, of course. There are other options. This election is not a "binary choice" as Trump backers claim [emphasis added]. If the top candidates are, on the one hand, a congenital liar who jeopardized national security in service of her own ambition, and on the other, an unstable conspiracy theorist, the best choice is none of the above—a non-endorsement, a third party candidate, a write-in.

Doing this would be risky and perhaps costly. It'd also be right.

Over at RealClearPolitics, Heather Wilhelm (who also writes for The Federalist) sounds a similar note after Gov. Chris Christie pushed the idea that "Every Republican who is not working for Trump is working for Clinton….I said this to Jeb Bush the other day: 'It's chicken or fish, man. It's one or the other.'"

Wilhem writes:

If you're a Republican, and if you're not yet sold on Donald Trump taking the reins of the most powerful country in the world—or, for that matter, representing your party—you have likely heard this line everywhere you turn. You'll hear it from House Speaker Paul Ryan, who has described the election as a "binary choice" [emphasis added]. You'll hear it from Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, although he tends to shy away from using actual names: "He is better than she is." You'll hear it from just about any person you'll meet on the street who supports the GOP nominee….

"Chicken or Fish: YOU MUST CHOOSE" is a terrible analogy for this election. We do not live in a gulag cafeteria with a crazed dictatorial chef—at least not yet. We do not live on the set of "A Clockwork Orange." This is America, and, as I like to remind people, it's a free country, at least for now.

Second of all, our supposed "binary" choices—more on that later—are far worse than chicken or fish.

It's exciting to watch conservatives and Republicans see the light that politics, like the rest of life (especially in the 21st century) is not about binary choices but a range of choices (and the more choices, the better). As Matt Welch and I discussed and analyzed in The Declaration of Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix What's Wrong With America a few years back, we live in a world of proliferating options in all aspects of our lives. There are 40-plus types of Pop Tarts out there, 10 flavors (?) of Astroglide personal lubricant, and effectively an infinite number of entertainment channels thanks to the internet. Even the GOP last week acknowledged the legitimacy of multiple sexual orientations and once-binary categories such as race and ethnicity have seen a thousand flowers bloom, with people increasingly calling themselves multiracial, other, and the like.

Everywhere around us, we have more choices and, as important, we show more comfort with more choices. Understanding the world in terms of gradations and spectrums rather than simple yes/no, good/bad, right/left binaries is what the 21st century is all about.

Except in politics, where the two-party duopoly still smothers competition in all sorts of ways and forces diverse people between not chicken or fish but what South Park once modeled as the choice between a Giant Douche and a Turd Sandwich. So when conservative Republicans at The Weekly Standard and elsewhere start saying no dualistic party loyalty and refuse to insist on binary choices in politics, the beginning of change is afoot.

The leading alternative to Trump or Clinton is, of course, the Libertarian Party's ticket of Gary Johnson and William Weld, who are pulling as high as 13 percent in national polls and as high as 26 percent in a single Utah congressional district. It's far from clear how many Republicans, especially the defense hawks at places such as The Weekly Standard and elsewhere, would consider voting for Johnson, but the former two-term Republican governor of New Mexico's whole pitch is that he better represents most Americans' views than either Trump or Hillary. And as Weld recently told Reason TV in an interview that will air tomorrow, the LP ticket is trying to shake up fixed ideas about what's possible in political coalitions.

Something is also happening on the liberal side of the political aisle, too. If the Bernie Sanders insurgency didn't end up winning the day, it showed broad discontent within the Democratic Party with Hillary Clinton. And according to recent survey data of millennials by researchers at Harvard, in a three-way race, "Gary Johnson takes more from from Clinton, than Trump: Clinton 45%, Trump 23%, Johnson 13%, 19% Undecided." Unsurprisingly, Johnson is making a pitch to Sanders' voters, telling them they agree with him more than they do with Clinton.

Increasingly, then, the right and the left, conservatives and liberals, Republicans and Democrats are realizing that a complicated world cannot be squeezed down into "binary choice" between chicken or fish, douche or turd, or Trump and Clinton. As important, voting for neither major-party candidate doesn't mean you're helping one of them win. As Drew Carey, a member of the board of trustees that runs Reason Foundation (the nonprofit that publishes this website) recently told The Daily Beast:

As for why Carey supports Johnson, he said, "I don't need a national daddy, or mommy." Like Johnson, Carey would not say which of the two major candidates he believes would be worse for the country. Asked who the "lesser of two evils" is between Clinton and Trump, he replied, simply, "Gary Johnson." And he has no concerns about the Libertarian candidate potentially stealing votes away from Hillary Clinton and inadvertently delivering the election to Donald Trump, as some polls have shown.

"I don't give a fuck," Carey says, bluntly. "If your person doesn't get enough votes, you lose. I don't want to hear it. There are more than two choices and you are allowed to vote for whoever you want. This is America. If you can't get the votes to win, tough shit." 

Watch Gary Johnson talk with me and Matt Welch—and RNC delegates—on the streets of Cleveland: 

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  1. The problem being that the reason #NeverTrumpers don’t like Trump is that he’s not statist enough for them.

    I guess it’s time to make the libertarian case for Hillary.

    1. It’s funny that reason has to shill for GayJay when he’s taking most of his support from Hitlery.

      1. Gary Johnson would suck a bag bloody AIDS dicks to prove his worth to liberals.

        He is an authoritarian statist. If Gary Johnson is libertarian then so is Michael Bloomberg. Socially liberal, fiscally conservative Nazis.

    2. Huh? The nevertrumpers I know (myself included) won’t vote for him because he’s an authoritarian who wants to expand the power of the federal government.

  2. Whoever wins, be it Trump or Hillary, they are not going to give a fuck or act any differently if they won with 55% of the vote or won with 35%. They will be President and will consider themselves with a mandate. So the idea that voting for a losing third party somehow makes any difference by “voicing your discontent” is absurd.

    If you want to vote Johnson because it makes you feel good or because you figure that Johnson getting more votes will help the LP get pub and do better in the future, fine. That is a perfectly rational thing to do. If you want to vote for Johnson because you think doing so registers your discontent wit the two major parties and will cause the winner to act differently or care about your discontent, you are delusional.

    Drew Carry is right not to give a fuck. But he needs to understand whoever wins the election won’t give a fuck either. The losers might give a fuck but they lost. So who cares what they think. The only people that matter are the winners and most certainly won’t give a fuck that Drew Carry or anyone else voted for Johnson.

    1. In short, everyone should either vote or not vote based on whatever they get out of that, knowing that future events will not be effected in any way whatsoever based on their vote. Because thinking their vote effects anything is irrational.

      1. Ding ding ding. Vote for the satisfaction it gives you, if you bother to vote. Don’t pretend to be important.

        1. I think it would be a good exercise for everyone who believes in democracy as the avenue for justice, to go out there and try to effect the outcome.

          Your one vote is meaningless, but if you can convince larger numbers of people to vote a certain way, that might affect things.

          So, go volunteer, canvas a contested district or swing state, and try as hard as you can to convince people to vote your way.

          Then, after it’s all over, sit back and evaluate how much you improved things, vs how much effort you put in.

          Then, consider how we give a relatively small group of people enormous power over everyone’s lives, and our only ability to influence the outcome is influencing their selection process this way, giving the most influence to the people who can coordinate large groups of people willing to engage in such politically motivated influence effort to the exclusion of anything else they could be doing with their time.

          And we call the outcome “justice” and “society structured by the will of the people.”

          It’s such bullshit. But, let’s sit back and watch with popcorn.

          1. It’s the worst form of government out there, except for all the others.

        2. Your vote isn’t important, but it is vitally important you don’t soil yourself by voting for a “bad candidate” whoever that is. You do realize how stupid that sounds don’t you?

          1. sure sounds stupid to me.

            Who said that?

            1. Who said that?

              John.

          2. Your vote is highly unlikely to influence the result of the election. However, your subjective satisfaction from voting for a candidate who isn’t an evil scumbag may be quite high, even if your vote is unlikely to have drastic effects.

            How is this hard to understand?

          3. It’s not important at all. Where do you get the idea that I think it’s important? I mean, if you vote for someone as loathsome as Hillary or Trump, shame on you. But you haven’t really done anything.

        3. You’re not important. Now STFU and VOTE TRUMP so that us important people don’t have to see giant political posters of that tyrannical harridan Hitlery plastered everywhere as we go about doing our important things

          1. I thought I was supposed to STFU and vote Hillary to avoid having the weekly populist rantings of an ugly, aging, reality star hasbin treated as the most important news of all time ever.

            Gosh, doing democracy right is so hard.

    2. It may not make a difference in the outcome, but myself, I can’t just give up on my principles and vote for either of the 2 major candidates. One of them is going to win, we know that, but I’m not going to be even one vote responsible for that. I would be happy to vote for Johnson, but I can’t do that either, his ticket is not libertarian enough for me, so I don’t feel it’s a good protest vote. If Rand was the libertarian candidate, I would absolutely vote for him. If McAfee OR Petersen were the LP candidate, I would vote LP. Johnson is looking too much of a sell out for me.

      To the other point of your post, the 2nd paragraph. If the LP ever gets to 15% of the vote, it absolutely will have an impact on whoever wins, because at that point libertarian voters will be a force to be reckoned with, having the numbers to tip an election one way or the other. But the LP is going to have to get a better candidate before that happens.

      1. I’m pretty confident my vote will not sway the outcome of the election, so I’m voting my conscious.

        Also, not voting LP because they “can’t win” is a self-fulfilling prophecy.

        I disagree about 15% though. I think even 5% is a good number. It adds ballot access the next cycle, and it’s enough to sway close elections.

        In the last 2 cycles here in AZ, I’ve seen LP candidates get a bigger % than the margin of victory between Blue and Red. Of course, the state reacted by making it harder for the LP to get on the ballot. Dicks.

        1. I’ll add to this. As others have pointed out on this board, you don’t have to win to have an effect. You just have to be a consistent spoiler to demand attention.

          And if you always vote for the big Teams, then your vote is taken for granted.

        2. I live in Massachusetts. My vote definitely will not sway the outcome.

        3. Even if my vote could sway the outcome of the election, I still wouldn’t vote for evil.

      2. I approve this message.

        But if I get the impression that a Democrat can actually lose NJ, I might have to consider voting for Trump. I doubt I will, but I hate Hillary enough to maybe get off my ass and do it.

    3. A third party vote is like arguing with the umpire. You are doing it not because the umpire will change his call – he won’t and you know he won’t. But NEXT time he’ll be more careful.

  3. I saw that episode again recently and couldn’t believe it was 12 years old. Anybody know when we’re getting some new SP episodes? I could really use some during this election season.

      1. Thanks. That link has really sent me down a rabbit hole though 🙂

  4. “This is America. If you can’t get the votes to win, tough shit.”

    “This is America. If you can’t get the votes to indict, tough shit.”

  5. There are 40-plus types of Pop Tarts out there

    There are?! That’s even more shameful and decadent than our excessive deodorant choices. Down with capitalism!

  6. Hitlary is bad and Der Drumpf is an existential threat to the country. Would be great to get Obama in for another term. But that’s not an option. I’m voting Johnson/Weld. “Evil triumps when good people do nothing.” At least we can say we tried.

    1. Would be great to get Obama in for another term.

      Need moar war! More surveillance! More debt! Yay, Barry!

      dajjal delenda est.

  7. The urgency of electing Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton will come into sharper relief the closer November gets. Can we really let that other person become president? It’s the gut check moment. Time to dig deep, hold that nose and pull the lever for the candidate. It’s a binary choice, alright, no matter how many candidates in the mix. You’re either voting against the greater evil or you’re not!

    It will all come down to whose votes Johnson/Weld steal like the spoiler thieves in the night that they are. And that will be partly up to them and partly up to how they’re portrayed.

    1. The Berniebots have had plenty of time to think about this. There’s an alternative candidate for them in Jill Stein. So why don’t the polls show a sharp spike in her polling number? Because Berniebots are going to vote for Hillary. Not all of them, some will even vote Trump because of their hatred for Hillary. But most of them WILL vote for Hillary. Right after Bernie was declared the loser, Hillary got about a 10 pt boost from it. Those are former Berniebots. She’s lost almost all of that now, but just saying, very few people even think 3rd party. Stein is polling around 3%. That translates to less than 1% on election day. Johnson is around 8% and that also equates to less than 1% on election day. In big part because of what you just said. When I see a 3rd party candidate polling above 15%, then I’ll pay attention.

      1. Nobody knows who Jill Stein is. The only reason she even gets 3% is because she’s listed as an option. Hans Gruber would get 3%.

        1. McClane!

          1. Mister Officer John McClane of the New York Police Department?

        2. Here’s a candidate with a party who makes the environment the most important issue and no one cares. That’s a good indication of how important most Americans think climate change is. 3% important.

        3. Hans Gruber would get 3%.

          He’d do better than that: intelligent, articulate, and wears nice suits. Also cool voice.

          1. He also has the endorsement of both the New Provo Front AND Asian Dawn

  8. Let me see if I have this straight….

    The DNC’s hacked emails are made public and they seem to confirm the following: The DNC stacked the deck against Bernie / The DNC was going to slime Bernie as a Jew (or worse and atheist) / the Politico and the DNC coordinated stories they put out i the press.

    A DNC spokesperson came out today to say that “unnamed experts” have determined that Russia is behind the leaking of the emails – and that these same “unnamed experts” say that Russia is releasing these documents because they want to see Trump elected as president.

    And because of the above scandal – for the first time in about forever – the head of the Democratic party will not speak at or gavel the convention open.

    …and yet Reason Magazine has four articles out today, with nary a word on this occurrence. Goddammit, bring Virginia Postrel back..

    1. Postrel is not coming back. The commentariat here is too icky for her.

      Reason does not have time to write about leaked emails, there’s too many Trump articles in the queue.

      1. And thus, it’s up to the commentariat.

        Obama brother a Trumpet

        1. That’s hilarious.

          1. When asked by The Post how many wives and children he has, Obama demurred.

            “That’s personal,” he said.

            hahaha

        2. He’s also annoyed that Clinton and President Obama killed Libyan leader Moammar Khadafy, whom he called one of his best friends.

          Yeah, family get-togethers can be kind of awkward.

        3. Delicious!

      2. We need more trans bathroom posts.

    2. Was not a DNC spokesperson, it was Hillary’s aptly-named campaign manager Robby Mook.

      1. And one of the DNC email recipients was named Schmuck. (Really!)

    3. Thank you. It appears Reason has not so subtly turned to the “Hillary At All Costs” side.

    4. Not understanding your complaint. There’s a post about the leaks here on Hit & Run, from Friday, I think. That’s where I learned about it.

      1. There’s a post about the leaks here on Hit & Run, from Friday, I think.

        It was, not surprisingly, spun as a Trump article

        Last night in Donald Trump’s nomination acceptance speech, the candidate made clear plays toward Bernie Sanders voters, referencing him by name and repeating Sanders refrain that “the system is rigged” on behalf of the rich and powerful.

        Sanders’ Twitter feed at the time was not having it, blasting out criticism of Trump’s speech

        yes, the post then pivots to the substance of the wikileaks email dump – but the impulse to make Trump the basis for the lede is the sort of journalistic absurdity that is beginning to grate on people’s nerves.

    5. A DNC spokesperson came out today to say that “unnamed experts” have determined that Russia is behind the leaking of the emails – and that these same “unnamed experts” say that Russia is releasing these documents because they want to see Trump elected as president.

      To be fair, there are non-anonymous (though not necessarily apolitical, of course) security folks who think that this was a Russian operation.

      Of course, it shouldn’t matter — both “bad guys support Trump” and “you wouldn’t have found out about the bad things we did if it weren’t for big bad Russia” are fallacious arguments, albeit ones many people pretty readily accept.

    6. Sad!

      But seriously, this is the type of thing Reason used to be all over. It’s why I used to read the articles – there used to be articles about stuff that you wouldn’t know existed if you just read WaPo and the NYT and just watched network news. Now it’s mainly just another MSM/SJW news source, where I learn more from the comments than the magazine.

      1. DNC has stripped the chairman of her role at the Democratic convention, an historic event – that was covered?

        Politico submitting it’s news stories for approval before publishing them – that was covered ?

        Democratic spokesperson alleging that “unnamed experts” say that Russia leaked the DNC emails to help the Trump campaign – that was covered?

        It’s amazing that the Reason was able to cover these events that occurred today – two days ago. Can I borrow their time machine to see the Lotto picks next week?

        1. Take a chill pill. I was referring only to the first portion (The DNC stacked the deck against Bernie…), but forgot to blockquote it.

        2. Politico submitting it’s news stories for approval before publishing them – that was covered ?

          Really?

          i think its relatively common if you’re *quoting someone* to send them an example of what you plan to run. not the whole piece, necessarily, but often “is this what you’re good with?”-confirmation to stay in good-graces with your sources.

          Tho i’d think with political PR people it would hardly be necessary. they’re so careful how they say things, and have to pump out so much spin, that it would be sort of a burden to have to do that much back/forth. My own experience the sort of “confirmation” of that type was mostly with covering corporate management or IR people, but i could imagine it would be similar elsewhere.

          An influential reporter at Politico made an apparent “agreement” with the Democratic National Committee to let it review a story about Hillary Clinton’s fundraising machine before it was submitted to his editors, leaked emails published by WikiLeaks on Friday revealed.

          ….sending an advanced copy of a story to a subject represents a break from typical journalistic ethics.

          A person with knowledge of the agreement, however, said that it was made to ensure accuracy in a complex story.

          Seems like they could spin it either way.

    7. They are too busy banging out 127 anti-Trump rants.

  9. Gary Johnson is a supremely frustrating candidate. If he were marginally competent he would be within striking distance of Trump. Thirteen percent (the MAXIMUM he’s getting in the polls, keep in mind) might seem great given previous LP performance, but it’s pathetic given his competition. Not since the Civil War has the electorate been this open to third parties. There actually is/was a path to victory open — deny Clinton an EC majority and beat Trump in the EC — but 13% ain’t going to cut it, and it’s hard to see how he can possibly get those poll numbers up with the horrid major party candidates now fully “priced in”.

    When it became clear that it was going to be Trump vs. Clinton, I thought voting for Johnson was a slam dunk. But he’s been saying things that seem calculated to piss off right-leaning libertarians like myself, so it’s not a sure thing.

    1. Not sure where this 13% is coming from. He’s never been above 10% in the RCP avg, and he’s around 8% right now.

      Also, I don’t believe no matter how good of a candidate he is, right now, he’d never get much over 10%, never even close to either of the 2 major party candidates. Libertarians are still little known and much misunderstood in this country. We have a long long way to go before getting a presidential candidate elected. The LP should be focusing more on Congress and state level elections, where they actually have a chance right now.

      1. The LP should be focusing more on Congress and state level elections, where they actually have a chance right now.

        How do you figure that? Both parties have congressional districts locked down tight due to built in advantages to incumbency.

        Statewide races are similarly hard to crash unless you’re already well-known and have a ton of money. The only hope is if mid-profile Republicans start to defecting to the LP.

        1. Well, then how do you Explain Paul, Massie, and Amash?

          1. That leaves 250 or so others.

        2. The only hope is if mid-profile Republicans start to defecting to the LP

          I think the best hope is libertarians running as Republicans.

          1. Well you said LP in your comment. Sure, libertarians can run as Republicans and win as we’ve seen. But as far as a third party actually winning seats in Congress I can’t picture that at all under the current system.

            1. I did. But for what it’s worth, I’d like to see both more LP candidates and libertarians running as Republicans. The latter being the best hope currently, for libertarians. But I think the LP will start making some progress soon, just not at the presidential level.

              1. It seems like the LP would have an easier time at the local level than the presidential level. There are some areas out there that would probably pretty open to a Libertarian candidate, and when we’re talking about local elections politicians really only need to sway a couple of thousand people. Yeah the Libertarians probably aren’t about to replace Sanders, but winning some seats in a few state legislatures seems a lot more obtainable than winning the White House.

            2. libertarians can run as Republicans and win

              Very, very rarely. Three out of maybe 300 congress/Senate types.

    2. You think that an open borders candidate has a chance against Trump this year? You must be kidding.

      1. They aren’t kidding, they’re delusional and dead serious.

      2. Open borders is a problematic position for Johnson. But Trump and Hillary have lists of problematic positions that are longer than my arm.

    3. Again, it’s name/party recognition. I don’t know anybody who knows who is.

  10. And according to recent survey data of millennials by researchers at Harvard, in a three-way race, “Gary Johnson takes more from from Clinton, than Trump: Clinton 45%, Trump 23%, Johnson 13%, 19% Undecided.”

    Suppose an urn contains 75% blue balls and 25% red balls. I remove a bunch of balls in a way that a red ball is twice as likely to be removed as a blue ball. Which color will most of the balls I remove be?

    1. Time to play Spot the Euphemism.

    2. Thats easy.

      Red. Because you are removing rad balls in a manner to ensure that red balls be removed.

      1. I was about to sound the buzzer on you but realize now that the question was ambiguous.

        ” in a way that a red ball is twice as likely to be removed as a blue ball”

        should be

        “in a way that a ball is twice as likely to be removed if it is red as opposed to blue”

    3. As if people on H&R don’t know what to do about blue balls.

  11. “I don’t give a fuck,” Carey says, bluntly. “If your person doesn’t get enough votes, you lose. I don’t want to hear it. There are more than two choices and you are allowed to vote for whoever you want. This is America. If you can’t get the votes to win, tough shit.”

    Yep, and that’s for both sides. I really and truly don’t give a fuck about whatever apocalyptic scenarios conservatives and liberals dream up of Hillary and Trump doing to make themselves feel less like whores for jumping into bed with them. They’re not the cause of our present decline into a banana republic, they’re simply a worsening symptom of it.

    1. But Carey’s missing the point. If this were the college football playoff selection or American Idol that would make sense, because the only effect of the vote is that somebody wins and other people lose.

      The effect of Hillary winning the election is not just that she wins the election. That’s why the “lesser evil” strategy holds weight. If the consequences of one of the candidates winning are bad enough, you’re better off voting to prevent that candidate from winning than voting for your favorite candidate.

  12. And for today’s evidence of the eternal, perfect, and undeniable wonderfulness of immigration: Machete-wielding Syrian refugee, 21, hacks PREGNANT woman to death in the street and injures two others in latest horror to rock Germany

    But remember, Germany: statistically, you are more likely to die by falling in a bathtub. Also, pregnancies are statistically more likely to be terminated via abortion. And in any case, Muslim refugees aren’t really an “existential threat” to your nation. It’s hard to imagine them killing everyone in Germany and taking over. So, no worries! There’s nothing at all that can be done! You must not over-react! That’s what they want! Better to just relax about it, you irrational fools!

    /Francisco d’ Anconia

    1. Just stop. This has nothing to do with Islam or refugees. People get hacked up by machetes all of the time in Germany, by blonde haired, blue eyed people. They also attack people on trains with axes and shoot up kids at McDonalds while yelling ‘Allahu Akbar’. You baggers, duh!

    2. I propose that we import as many Muslims as possible, put them on the dole, and imprison anyone critical of my policy for hate speech.

      1. Hillary approves this message.

        1. And anyone who doesn’t shit their pants over Trump’s latest tweet will be labeled a Trumpet.

    3. I net thst was an assault machete with one of those thingys.

      I cant help but wonder why he did it.

    4. Ugh, I need to stop reading the news for awhile

    5. What pants-shitter.
      Go back to the Federalist with the other pointyheads, Papaya.

    6. And so it begins:

      Bavaria’s top security official says Germany needs to be able to call upon its military in times of crisis like Friday night’s shooting rampage at a Munich mall.

      With an eye on the Nazi era excesses, Germany’s post-war constitution only allows the Bundeswehr to be deployed domestically in a national emergency.

      But state Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann told Welt am Sonntag newspaper Sunday the regulations are obsolete, with “an absolutely stable democracy in our country.”

      You know who else said that postwar restrictions on military deployments were obsolete?

      1. If they really want to relive their Nazi past they should start with banning books.

        Ali Sonboly: Everything we know about the Munich gunman:

        Gunman used ‘books studying mass shootings to plan attack’

        Written in 2010 by Dr Peter Langman, the book analyses mass shootings in American schools and attempts to explain the rationale behind the people who commit them.

        Dr Langman, an American psychologist, reacted to the attack on Saturday by saying that young gunmen often research other perpetrators to find a role model.

        He said the book was written “to keep people safe, to teach people what to look for to prevent such attacks”.

        1. So it’s easier to acquire a gun than a book. Unless you’re a mass shooter, then you use the books to make it even easier to acquire a gun!

          1. Does the Glock owners manual count as a book?

    7. I’d avoid Germany if you’re so frightened. Where did you get your German bathtub death statistics?

    8. Open the borders, let people choose freedom of association including freedom to work anyone you want wherever they are from, free speech and full self defense and stop stealing (aka welfare) and the immigration problem solves itself.

  13. OT: When asked why he did not go to the convention, Senator Flake said “I’ve got to mow my lawn.”

    1. Flake has been pretty good on a lot of issues. Not quite Amash or Rand Paul but still

      1. He’s gained some of my respect for not endorsing Trump.

        1. Did Cruz as we ?))l

          1. yes

      2. He supported the Iran deal — fuck him.

      3. He’s been consistent on tax and budget issues, as well as the 2A.

    2. Doesn’t he live in a desert?

  14. As Matt Welch and I discussed and analyzed in The Declaration of Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix What’s Wrong With America a few years back, we live in a world of proliferating options in all aspects of our lives. There are 40-plus types of Pop Tarts out there….

    I feel like Nick’s articles should be read aloud by Ron Popeil sometimes.

    And whenever this bit is edited in, a woman should step onto the TV-set with a copy of the book in her hands, turning for each of the cameras, showing off its *shiny, multihued cover*, opening it to stroke its strong, 100%-cotton-paper pages, and turning to the rear to display its rigid, double-glued and stitched spine.

    AND IF YOU ACT NOW, YOU CAN GET THIS LIFETIME SUBSCRIPTION TO REASON AND THIS HANDY “NOT IN MY NAME!!“-WAVING-CANE! WE HAVE INTERNS HERE WAITING TO TAKE YOUR CALL TODAY

    1. Ron is getting long in the tooth. How about Phil Swift.

      1. How about Phil Swift.

        I was leaning more towards the Sham-Wow guy.

        He reminds me of Parker Quinn from Fallout 4

  15. “Stalwart Republicans in the #NeverTrump camp are vocalizing their discontent with their party’s nominee even more loudly after the Republican National Convention.”

    The people I’m seeing stay in the Party aren’t stalwart Republicans as I understand it. If these were stalwart Republicans, they would have left the Republican Party when George W. Bush betrayed the most basic principles of Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan.

    I registered Libertarian when I turned 18 in response to George H. W. Bush breaking his “no new taxes” pledge–this after putting on my church suit and going door to door for Reagan when I was a little kid and too young to vote. To cop a phrase from Reagan, “I didn’t leave the [Republican] Party; the [Republican] Party left me”.

    The people I’m seeing dump Reagan are largely people who came into the Republican fold as Reagan Democrats. George W. Bush himself was a Southern Democrat a la Johnson in every way that mattered (expanded Great Society programs and fought a war to spread Democracy). What took the rest of the principled Republicans so long to finally wake up?

    I’d think the Tea Party might have given them hope, but the Tea Party was roundly denounced by the Republican establishment.

    1. Bush is a neocon, just like Hilary. Then only difference in GOP neocons and Dem neocons are taxes and gun control. Everything else they are the same, war, more war, spending, more spending, and horrible on civil rights.

      1. The party has been overrun by concerns that used to drive Southern Democrats.

        They were invited over to dinner by Ronald Reagan, and somehow they came to imagine they owned the place.

        We all know Goldwater’s opinion of social conservatives, and Reagan never bothered to so much as throw them a bone. William F. Buckley wasn’t on board with these guys. I don’t know where they think they got their credentials as Republicans in the first place.

        The neo-conservatives are new to conservatism because they used to be liberals back before Reagan. There isn’t much difference between them because they’re the same people we used to call liberals.

        1. Trump doesn’t satisfy social conservatives, neocons, big business, or libertarians. Literally none of the GOP’s serious ideological groups likes him. He won the primaries on the strength of low info GOPers being pissed off at the establishment and latching on to anybody who criticizes them, combined with Democrats in open primary states crossing party lines to vote for the only candidate Hillary can beat.

          1. Literally none of the GOP’s serious ideological groups likes him.

            Your mistake might be in thinking that “serious ideological groups” actually matter at all.

            The people you call “Low-info” may be 90% of the public.

            And i think the term “low info” is probably unnecessarily derogatory – they’re not better or worse for their lack of ideological interests.

            Do the “high-info” readers of magazines like the National Review or Weekly Standard uniformly support good candidates and good policies?

            I think the Trump phenomenon is a wake up call to the ‘political nerds’ that they don’t really matter as much as they thought. politics is always about emotional appeals to a mob. “ideology” is so much window-dressing.

            1. The other mistake he makes is that he assumes that every member of the “serious ideological’ groups are single issue voters. They are not. Just because someone is a SOCON or an evangelical doesn’t mean they won’t vote on other issues like immigration or trade.

            2. Do the “high-info” readers of magazines like the National Review or Weekly Standard uniformly support good candidates and good policies?

              Have you read NRO comments recently? It makes the yokelization of Reason look quite insignificant.

              1. i read their blogs occasionally. never seen their comments.

                1. That’s because you don’t want America to be great again.

            3. I think the Trump phenomenon is a wake up call to the ‘political nerds’ that they don’t really matter as much as they thought.

              They provide the money, the volunteers, and the propaganda for the campaign, if nothing else. In a close election their votes matter. (This isn’t going to be a close election as Trump is going to get skewered among independents)

              politics is always about emotional appeals to a mob.

              No duh. You may have noticed that the Dems do this too, and much more effectively than Trump does.

              “ideology” is so much window-dressing.

              This is hilarious to read on Reason. You guys are really going full bore for Trump, aren’t you? Fuck libertarianism, we’ve got a protectionist, eminent domain loving reality TV host to get elected.

              1. I believe he was making a statement about the voting public in general. Aside from a handful of regular commenters Trump isn’t exactly a popular fellow among most.

                Simmer down, hot sauce.

              2. You guys are really going full bore for Trump, aren’t you?

                You’re a fucking genius.

          2. “He won the primaries on the strength of low info GOPers being pissed off at the establishment and latching on to anybody who criticizes them, combined with Democrats in open primary states crossing party lines to vote for the only candidate Hillary can beat.

            I’m trying to understand why winning the swing vote is a bad thing.

            That’s usually the hard part. If he’s coming down the stretch with them already in tow, Hillary better get scared.

            1. You seem to have misunderstood. The Democrats who crossed over are NOT intending to vote for him in the general, they were just voting for him because Hillary could beat him.

              1. You’re mistaken.

                The Democrats who crossed over for Trump are coming from the same Democrat constituency that made up the Reagan Democrats–AKA white, blue collar, middle class.

                That’s why Trump has scored so many points being anti-free trade and anti-illegal immigrants.

                And, really, since the progressives now dominate the Democratic leadership and since they’ve spent the last four years demonizing the white, blue collar, middle class for being racist, stupid, homophobic, and unwilling to believe in global warming, why wouldn’t you expect them to jump ship for an anti-PC firebrand?

                Your read of why Democrats in swing states voted for Trump is wishful thinking.

    2. The response to your party doing things you disagree with is not necessarily to leave it. Leaving means that your opponents win and the party will never return to its principles.

      1. I started our be registering libertarian and voting for Bush Sr. against Clinton.

        The Republicans left me further and further behind–as they continued to veer further and further off course.

        Then they abandoned pragmatism in foreign policy, backed the biggest expansion of Great Society programs over, broke the bank on spending, and bailed out Wall Street with taxpayer money.

        I’m not about to support Democrats just because they call themselves Republicans. That’s why I won’t vote for Trump either. He’s running to the left of Bill Clinton.

  16. “Yes, Donald Trump is crazy. And, yes, the Republican party owns his insanity.”

    I understand that Donald Trump’s craziness is supposed to be assumed by everyone in polite society at this point, but every time I look to see why people are calling him crazy, I come away unimpressed.

    Even the quotes about how he wants to target the families of ISIS just for being their family members turn out to be bogus.

    Donald Trump is flat, dead, wrong on a number of issues.

    Donald Trump is not crazy.

    I defy anybody to show me why he’s crazy. All the examples I’ve seen so far either completely ignore the context in which he said something, or they’re examples of him being either wrong or playing a particular demographic.

    P.S. It’s like calling Hitler paranoid. It’s not enough that Hitler was evil–do we have to call him paranoid?! Hundreds of millions of people all over the world were, in fact, conspiring to destroy him–and we’re going to call him paranoid? What does “paranoid” mean in that context?

    1. I defy anybody to show me why he’s crazy.

      Because want hang out wit teh cool kids, cocktail party at 3, everyone! Don’t forget, password to get in ‘TrumpIsHitler’.

      I mean, can there really be a rational explanation for Reason’s constant pant shitting about Trump? Someone give it a try, because I don’t believe there’s a rational explanation. I think my silly statement above will stand as the closest explanation.

      1. I see nothing silly in the statement.

      2. I think they just got done covering the Republican convention, and it’s appropriate for them to go after whomever is being nominated in both parties.

        Let’s see what they do with Hillary now that she’s on before we make any final judgements.

        But if Trump is crazy, he’s crazy like a fox.

        1. Uh huh. That’s why he’s still trailing Hillary when any other GOP candidate would have been kicking her ass.

          1. A year ago Trump was trailing Hillary by what, 30 points? Now they are close to tied.

            And no, I don’t think any of the other Republicans would have done as well as Trump. They were all squishes on immigration (at best).

            1. And no, I don’t think

              If you had only ended the sentence there…

          2. “That’s why he’s still trailing Hillary when any other GOP candidate would have been kicking her ass.”

            Trailing Hillary nationally? It doesn’t matter if 80% of Californians are against him.

            How’s he doing in swing states?

            “Support for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump ticked up across battleground states following the Republican National Convention last week, according to the new CBS News Battleground Tracker Poll.

            Trump now has 42 percent support across the 11 battleground states surveyed ? up from the 40 percent he had last week before the convention. Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has 41 percent support, unchanged from last week’s poll.

            The poll was conducted among 2,131 registered voters across 11 states including Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.

            http://thehill.com/blogs/ballo…..convention

            1. LOL you guys keep changing the nature of the polls you cite. An average over the “battleground states” is even more meaningless than the general popular vote. If you’re going to analyze the battleground states fine, do it by state. But that would go against the horserace they’re trying to play up.

              YouGov is a crap pollster by the way — they have serious selection bias issues because you volunteer for the poll.

              1. “LOL you guys keep changing the nature of the polls you cite. An average over the “battleground states” is even more meaningless than the general popular vote.”

                No.

                Polls in battleground states aren’t unimportant.

                Certainly not less important than national polls.

                If you thought it was important that he was leading in national polls, then why would it be unimportant that he’s leading in battleground states?

                Now you want to run with the goal posts into state by state comparisons? Have fun with that.

                Meanwhile, Trump is leading in swing states.

      3. It’s easy – as libertarians we’re used to someone being far more authoritarian in practice than the electable facade they put up for the proles. With Mr. Trump, out of the gates he’s a bald faced authoritarian by his own straightforward admission. The pants shitting comes in because that prior cynicism makes us think that he’d be even more authoritarian in practice than in his displayed persona. You might argue that with Trump, you get what you see, but you’re fighting to overcome a lot of cynicism in a naturally cynical bunch. We see someone who has used access to power as a means to enrich himself suddenly seeking the reins of power – no amount of hand-waving about how he’s totally transparent will shake that deep seated unease

        1. We see someone who has used access to power as a means to enrich himself suddenly seeking the reins of power

          And that just shows how incredibly naive Libertarians are about how the business world actually works. Libertarians have a bad habit of thinking the market is some kind of moral force that rewards the good and punishes the bad instead of it being a set of laws of human behavior. They are shocked that Trump would have ever been a rent seeker as a businessman. Every business man in this country is a rent seeker. They have to be. If they don’t do it, their competitors will. Anyone who thinks you can run anything larger than a mom and pop shop in this country without getting your hands dirty buying influence from politician is just being naive. It is like Trump said when asked about Hillary being at his daughter’s wedding; she was there because he paid her to be there. She was hired help. That is how things operate in this country. That sucks but it is reality.

          1. You’re full of shit. This country isn’t nearly that corrupt.

            The fact that you’re willing to badmouth America to excuse your new mancrush’s bad behavior speaks volumes, and makes you no better than the Obama supporters who claim we’re a racist country. Not to mention that Trump speaks positively about his rent seeking, not like it was a necessary evil.

            1. This country isn’t nearly that corrupt.

              You are an idiot who has no idea how the world works. Do you think people like Bill Gates or Henry Ford or Carnegie and the like before him got ahead by just working hard and providing a superior product? Fuck no. It is not that America is corrupt. It is that life is fucking hard. Nice guys really don’t finish first. Most people who get ahead get there by working their ass off, getting lucky, and at some point doing a few things they didn’t think they would do. If you want to keep your morals, go join a monastery or turn a wrench nine to five. But don’t start a business because the market doesn’t give a shit how nice of a guy you are and your competitors don’t care either.

              You have the understanding of the world of a 13 year old child. But that is most Libertarians.

              1. Oh look, John moved the goalposts again!

                You were claiming that rent-seeking was necessary to succeed in the market. Now you’re bringing up the need to play hardball with other market players. Very, very different things.

                And Gates, Ford, and Carnegie did not get where they were by rent-seeking. Were they mean to some of their partners, distributors, employees, even customers? Absolutely. But that’s an entirely different animal from greasing palms.

            2. Rent seeking in and of its self isn’t evil – it’s just part of the landscape that business is required to deal with.

              1. That is right bendover. I can’t compete in the business world without rent seeking if my competitors are rent seeking. I have to go out and do it if for no other reason than to keep them from screwing me.

                1. It is interesting that you bring up Bill gates, since he actually talked about that in an interview. Back in the 80s and 90s, MS really didn’t bother with lobbyists, until the congress started looking into it as monopoly. MS solution was to hire some lobbyists and make the problem go away. Congress didn’t really careif MS was a monopoly, only that they get there cut.

              2. Rent seeking in and of its self isn’t evil – it’s just part of the landscape that business is required to deal with.

                Even assuming that’s true, Trump’s attitude is not that rent-seeking is a necessary evil. He’s proud of doing it.

                1. Let me make sure I understand what you’re saying:

                  A man (Trump) who says he excels in everything he builds, touches, and does business with – seeks to further enhance his brand by bragging that even his “rent seeking” is extraordinary??

                  Quelle surprise !!

          2. And that just shows how incredibly naive Libertarians are about how the business world actually works. Libertarians have a bad habit of thinking the market is some kind of moral force that rewards the good and punishes the bad instead of it being a set of laws of human behavior. They are shocked that Trump would have ever been a rent seeker as a businessman.

            I have apparently never met a libertarian. The people I know who I thought were libertarians have never said that markets were moral or were surprised the Trump (or other businesspeople) were rent-seekers.

            This is an insight worthy of a civil service lifer.

            1. The people on here including the person I was responding to think otherwise. I don’t know you and frankly don’t want to so I can’t speak nor do I care what those who do know you think

              And you must have dreamed of working for the government and got turned down. The amount of anger and bitterness you have is really quite funny. I enjoy that you have this imaginary life you project onto me and I really enjoy what a bitter, butt hurt loser you seem to be. You really are an endless supply of schadenfreude.

            2. Even if it happens among market players, rent-seeking is NOT part of the free market. Any more than murdering your competitors is part of the free market because players in the illegal drug market do it.

              I’m not surprised that Trump greased palms, he’s a fucking scumbag through and through and that’s been known for a long time. What disturbs me is that “libertarians” are defending his actions. I can see making that excuse for Uber or Microsoft, where they grew big by noncoercive means, but then govt made it clear they would destroy them if they didn’t start “paying their fair share” in the lobbying game. That’s not what happened with Trump. And he’s BOASTING about rent seeking.

        2. We see someone who has used access to power as a means to enrich himself suddenly seeking the reins of power

          This sounds a lot more like Hillary.

          I see many differences between the two, but here’s one: Trump genuinely loves this country, but Hillary does not. She only loves it in the way that a nagging wife wants to “fix” a husband. I think many men sense that about her. Which is not hard, as it’s a standard prog attitude.

          We’ve had eight years of “It’s America’s fault for being racist/misogynist/homophobic,” and now the backlash is here.

    2. He’s had a lot of self-inflicted wounds in the campaign. I don’t know if he’s crazy, just incredibly impulsive and haphazard, and not focused on winning the election.

      The big GOP donors won’t touch him with a ten foot pole. Some of them are even supporting Hillary!

      He continues to antagonize Cruz and his supporters. He continues to antagonize the NeverTrumpers. He could have said no when Cruz wanted to make that speech, but didn’t.

      He continues to mouth off about the judge of Mexican descent in his court case. Red meat for the base, maybe, but he’s already got them at this point. Yeah, yeah, maybe the judge has other potential biases if you dig deeper, but it’s still a big stretch and a terrible thing to play up if you’re trying to win the general election.

      1. He doesn’t need the big donors. That is why they are so pissed. What people are missing in this campaign is that Trump is showing what a true 21st Century campaign looks like. Hillary has all of these donors and hundreds of millions of dollars and has carpet bombed all of the swing states with political ads while Trump has done virtually nothing like that. And those ads appear to have had no effect on the race. What do traditional big money political campaigns actually do? They run TV ads no one watches and everyone on both sides find annoying, send flyers no one reads and send out volunteers to call and bug people about voting. That is it. In the era of social media and the constantly changing news cycle, none of that does any good. What matters is who can control the media narrative that day. That is why Trump destroyed his better funded and better organized Republican opponents. They were all fighting the last war.

        This actually is going to be a very good thing for the country and politics. Gone will be the days where political winners and losers are determined by whoever had the most connections and most successfully kissed the ass of the big donors and could afford to pay the idiot consultants millions. It is going to open politics way up in this country. And if the staff at reason were anything but hipster half wits caught up in the collective beltway panic over TRUMP!! they would realize that and realize what an opportunity it is going to create for Libertarians.

        1. In the era of social media and the constantly changing news cycle, none of that does any good. What matters is who can control the media narrative that day. That is why Trump destroyed his better funded and better organized Republican opponents. They were all fighting the last war.

          Uh, no.

          Trump defeated the other Republicans because:

          1. The media wanted him to be the face of the GOP in the mind of the general electorate because he’s so noxious. That’s why he got so much face time.
          2. Democrats crossed over to vote for him in open primary states because he was clearly the weakest candidate for the general election.
          3. He went places with his rhetoric that no other candidate could, because those candidates are all politicians who need to be able to win general elections in the future. This appealed to idiots who value “straight talk” above all else, including influential talk radio and “conservative media” personas (Rush, Hannity, Breitbart Media, etc).

          This was a gaping vulnerability in the GOP primary that should have been obvious beforehand. There is no similar vulnerability in the general election campaign though. His exploitation of the vulnerability in the GOP process has actually closed off any avenue to victory in the general election.

          1. The polls say otherwise. Again, Hillary is running a big conventional campaign and she hasn’t touched Trump. Her lead is evaporating. You don’t need all of that shit.

            His exploitation of the vulnerability in the GOP process has actually closed off any avenue to victory in the general election.

            There is no point in having this conversation until you come around to reality. The reality is Trump very well may win. Even Nate Silver is admitting that now. If you are starting with the assumption, “Trump can’t win”, nothing you say afterwards carries any weight because your initial assumption is completely at odds with reality.

            Come back to reality where this race can go either way and we can talk. Otherwise we are just wasting time.

            1. Tell me then. What is Trump’s path to victory. He’s behind in the polls, his (tiny) convention bump is in the past and Hillary’s is in the future, and Hillary has barely spent any of her money. How does he change the current dynamic?

              If he has a chance of winning then there must be some way that he will do it. Reciting that money doesn’t matter, his poll negatives don’t matter, it’s the 21st century, doesn’t cut it.

              The reality is Trump very well may win. Even Nate Silver is admitting that now.

              The guy whose livelihood depends on treating elections as horseraces. When the score is 24-0 at the end of the 3rd quarter and Joe Buck says “there’s still a lot of time left in this one, only a three score game” do you really think that there’s a chance of a comeback or is he just trying to get you to keep watching for the commercial break?

              1. If you think the mild differences in the polls matter now, you’re high. Its the *first* quarter of the General Election, not the 4th.

                1. 1. It’s not the first quarter– people have been talking about Trump vs. Clinton since long before last week. Unlike a football game, what happens before the game officially begins matters to the score.

                  2. Even if it were the first quarter, if you fall behind in the first quarter, something has to change if you’re going to win.

                  3. It’s like the Bills vs. Patriots in the first quarter, and Tom Brady had to be taken out for concussion protocol, the entire starting Pats defense ate at Taco Bell for breakfast, and they all had to take massive dumps at kickoff. If the Bills are “only” behind 7-0 after being given all these gifts, do they really have reason to be hopeful when Brady and the D come back into the game?

                    1. 1. Be behind in the polls after your convention is over.
                      2. ???
                      3. Win the election!

                    2. yes, there is actually an entire general campaign to go, dipshit

                    3. If memory serves, Obama trailed McCain after the conventions in 2008.

                    4. It looks like the only time they were very-close was in that period (july-september)

                      i think the general point is that making a big-deal out of some minor differences in polls this far out is just #(*@(()@*# dumb.

                      particularly given how high both of the candidate’s negative-polling is. despite what people *say* in the polls about whom they support, translating stated-preference into demonstrated-preference requires actually going out and pulling a lever for someone.

                      Turnout will make all the difference. as long as the polls are within low-mid-single-digit differences, they can be completely erased by ‘how people actually behave’

                    5. If turnout is the difference then Trump is fucked. He has much bigger problems with getting the full GOP to vote for him than Hillary does with the Dems.

                    6. He has much bigger problems with getting the full GOP to vote for him than Hillary does with the Dems.

                      just stop. when you’re in a hole? stop digging.

              2. He is not behind in the polls. He is ahead in some polls. And he is ahead or even with Hillary in Florida, PA, Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin. Those states all went for Obama and would be more than enough to tip the election if they flipped back red.

                The facts are what they are. Trump very much may win. Come back and talk to me when you are living in reality.

                1. He is ahead in some polls. And he is ahead or even with Hillary in Florida, PA, Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin.

                  Link.

              3. Pretty much any external event works in Trump’s favor: every terror attack, every cop attacked, every crime by an illegal immigrant, any economic hiccup.

                Hillary is running on a platform of more Muslim refugees, Obamacare for illegals, and restricting gun rights. You think that’s going to sweep her to victory, huh?

                1. Unfortunately for Trump, any event where he opens his mouth and sound comes out, works in Hillary’s favor. Those events are much more common than terrorist attacks or cop murders.

                  Hillary isn’t running on any of those things, even though she is going to do them once elected. She’s running on not being Trump. And it will be enough. If the GOP had nominated a reasonable candidate she would have had a hell of a time defending herself on those issues, but that’s not happening.

                  1. Unfortunately for Trump, any event where he opens his mouth and sound comes out, works in Hillary’s favor.

                    Which is why he’s been gaining on her for a year…?

                    1. He has?

                      RCP average was 45-44 Clinton last September, it’s 45-43 Clinton now. The gap got wider for a while, but now we’re back to where we started.

                      Interestingly, it was 44-41 before the convention, so Hillary also got a bump from the Republican convention. That’s fucking sad. I seriously doubt Trump gets a bump from the Dem convention, even with the chaos in the DNC right now.

          2. http://uas.usc.edu/election/

            Yes, it is only one poll. But it is not the only one that has him ahead and it has Trump ahead outside the margin of error.

            Again, I am not saying that Trump is certain to win. i am saying claims that there is no way he can win and he is certain to lose are completely at odds with the facts. It just isn’t true.

            1. LOL. No methodology, no sampling technique given, and I’m not sure what they’re talking about with the 95% confidence interval line. You’re going to have to googling “poll that has trump ahead” again if this exercise in cherry picking is going to be successful.

              1. Rasmussan has him ahead as well. RCP has it at Clinton +2.7 and it doesn’t include this poll.

                http://www.realclearpolitics.c…..-5491.html

                Again, the facts are what they are. Screaming and trying to live in a different reality isn’t going to change them.

              2. That poll is of likely voters. As is Rasmussan. The only polls that show Clinton ahead are of registered voters. The likely voter polls are more accurate, since it only matters who shows up to the polls and Clinton has a real voter enthusiasm problem.

                Look at the RCP list. Clinton is behind or at best tied in the likely voter polls. Only the RV polls have her ahead. And those only have her up by 4 points or less. Republicans always under perform in RV polls.

                You are just kidding yourself.

                1. The likely voter polls are more accurate, since it only matters who shows up to the polls and Clinton has a real voter enthusiasm problem.

                  LOL. Trump’s got much bigger problems with securing the GOP vote. I wouldn’t call it an enthusiasm problem, because his opponents in the GOP do enthusiastically hate him and everything he stands for. Still, much worse problems than Hillary has.

                  Did you decide that likely voter polls are more accurate before or after you figured out which type Trump did better in?

              3. http://www.ipsos-na.com/download/pr.aspx?id=15780

                Look at the Reuters poll that has Hillary up by 4. First it is of registered not likely voters. Second, it sampled 42% Democrats. No way is the electorate going to be 42% Dem and 32% Republican in November. That is wildly weighted in Hillary’s favor. And yet, it only has her up by 4 points. She should be ahead by 10 or more in a poll that favorably weighted.

                1. No way is the electorate going to be 42% Dem and 32% Republican in November.

                  Why not? Those numbers are close to the national proportions.

                  1. I look forward to the debates.

                    I assume that Trump will have a Lazio moment, where the democrats and the media take a pause from their feminist pioneer moment to whine and scream about how horrible it is for a man to treat a poor little old lady like that during the debate.

                    And they’ll harp on it until Hillary wins the election. At that point, they’ll switch back to feminist victory moment, showing us how women are just as tough as men and can do anything they can do, better.

                    I want butter on my popcorn.

                    1. The difference between Trump and Lazio is that in this case the media won’t have to lie, given how little control Trump has over his mouth.

                      I still wouldn’t be surprised if Trump’s candidacy was a deal with his good friends the Clintons, intended to get Hillary elected all along.

                    2. I think they’re primed and ready to go Lazio at the drop of a hat.

          3. The media wanted him to be the face of the GOP in the mind of the general electorate because he’s…

            …entertaining and gets ratings.

            1. That certainly didn’t hurt, but it wasn’t the prime motivation. Ron Paul made great theater and certainly got people riled up (both for and against) but the media acted like he didn’t exist.

  17. Does anyone really need 3 choices of deodorant political representation?

  18. Christie says it’s a choice between spoiled fish or spoiled chicken. Well I just became Vegan.

  19. The DNC’s hacked emails are made public and they seem to confirm the following: The DNC stacked the deck against Bernie / The DNC was going to slime Bernie as a Jew (or worse and atheist) / the Politico and the DNC coordinated stories they put out i the press.

    A DNC spokesperson came out today to say that “unnamed experts” have determined that Russia is behind the leaking of the emails – and that these same “unnamed experts” say that Russia is releasing these documents because they want to see Trump elected as president.

    Any word as to whether or not those aforementioned shadowy Roooskies *caused* those things to happen?

    “I’m not sorry I did those things. I’m just sorry you found out.”

    1. It’s always the same pattern.

      I didn’t do it, and even if I did, so what, look over there/it’s old news/he did it too.

    2. My experts tell me that DWS has been discovered to be the disguise of a male Russian spy named Igor Buttuglyov.

  20. Gary is in more dire need of Viagra than any other Johnson in history.

  21. I would much prefer the Reason staff run this country than the trash, on both sides of the Isle that are running it at present.

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  23. NPR is on the case

    In an interview with CNN, Sanders, once again, called on Schultz to resign.

    “It goes without saying the function of the DNC,” Sanders said, “is to represent all of the candidates to be fair and even-minded.”

    Sanders also called the emails an “outrage” and “sad” but also that they do not come as “a great shock.” He believes that the DNC was “at opposition to our campaign” all along, he said Sunday morning.

    “I mean there’s no question to my mind and I think no question to any objective observer’s mind that the DNC was supporting Hillary Clinton, and was at opposition to our campaign,” Sanders said.

    With any luck, the Berniebots will stay away in droves, and that tap-in will turn out to have landed in the water hazard.

    1. I hate to say this, because I fucking hate the DNC and DWS, but I kind of wish the RNC had done something similar to Trump. The DNC was at least somewhat looking at the big picture — Sanders would have been an awful candidate in the general election. The RNC has been simply looking to keep Trump and his supporters from getting mad at them from day one, which is a terrible decision from a big picture perspective. Big picture is you don’t want Trump or his supporters.

      1. So a party that hasn’t won a popular vote at the national level since 2004 and has lost all but one of them since 1988, didn’t want millions of the voters in its primary. Yeah ,that makes sense.

        It is funny how people accidentally drop the mask and reveal what is actually going on inside their heads. Big picture is you don’t want Trump or his supporters. Your issue isn’t really Trump, it is that you hate his supporters. It is for you, like it is for many, just a question of class snobbery. Notice you say “you don’t want..” not Republicans but the generalized “you” meaning the Democrats shouldn’t want them either. It is kind of staggering to think how badly you must hate a group of people to think they should have no say in their government at all and never be accepted or have their interests represented by any party. And that is what you just said, though I don’t think you did so intentionally.

        Doesn’t it kind of bother you to hate a group of people that much? Don’t you think maybe that kind of viceral hatred might cloud your reasoning on the subject a bit?

        1. There wasn’t much of a mask to drop regarding not wanting Trump. Seeing as how his supporters just drove the party into a ditch, they need to reevaluate their decision making or peace out as well.

          So a party that hasn’t won a popular vote at the national level since 2004 and has lost all but one of them since 1988, didn’t want millions of the voters in its primary.

          A lot of those voters were Democrats sabotaging the GOP process in open primary states, not actual Trump supporters. I know a shitload of Democrats who did just this. The GOP needs to ditch open primaries and hold caucuses in states where closed primaries are not allowed. The Democrats do this EVERY TIME and this time they succeeded. It has to stop.

          And the question can easily be reversed. Can the GOP afford to lose the millions of real Republican voters who voted against Trump and despise him, along with getting massacred among the independents? Can they afford the Trump stink dribbling down the ticket and attaching to their candidates for Congress and state elections?

          t is for you, like it is for many, just a question of class snobbery.

          You’re really deploying the full dishonest liberal bag of tricks ain’t you? Is supporting Trump a class thing?

          1. You said what you said. You are just pissed I called you on it.

    2. “I mean there’s no question to my mind and I think no question to any objective observer’s mind that the DNC was supporting Hillary Clinton, and was at opposition to our campaign,” Sanders said.

      here’s the thing – will it cause him to refuse to endorse Clinton? (or retract it, or whatever)

      is he speaking at the DNC… or was he supposed to?

      I really think the only possible danger/impact of the wikileaks thing is if it really un-motivates bernie supporters. If he continues to hammer this, and the DNC continues to freeze him out, it could do just that.

      Depends on how much more dirt like this gets thrown.

      1. He is demanding DWS resign. Bernie seems pretty pissed about this. I don’t think it is out of the question he might walk and refuse to speak at the convention unless they throw him a pretty serious bone or at least DWS’s and a few others’ heads. You would think that would be easy to make happen. But it hasn’t happened yet.

      2. I smile when I think about what Hillary must be saying about Bernie when nobody’s recording her. “What the fuck did that fucking Jew Bastard say now! I already put his commie shit in the fucking platform! Why won’t anybody (wink,wink) shut that cocksucker up!”

        And then I smile more when I think of Bernie playing with Hillary like a cat on a string. “Now, now, Hillary, you know I have Jill on speed dial. All I have to do is press this button and give her the word, and you’re done you crazy bitch.”

        1. Bernie is nuts. He is a total lose cannon. Anyone who thinks they know what Bernie is going to do this week or say if and when he speaks at the convention is kidding themselves.

          1. Are you talking about Bernie or your mancrush Trump?

        2. If Bernie decided to go join Stein on a 3rd party run?

          Game over, hillary.

          never going to happen, but its true. It would crush the Democrats.

          1. I can’t believe he would do it either. But I wouldn’t say he won’t. Like I said, Bernie is a lose cannon.

            1. lose cannon

              *golf clap*

          2. Trump would still lose.

            1. LOL, no.

        3. DWS was calling MSNBC complaining about Mika Brzezinski being mean to Hillary. God are these people thin skinned.

          And for the record, I think MIka is hot. I know she is a stupid Prog but she always did it for me in a big way.

          1. That’s funny, because I’ve seen Mika practically cry in despair over things Trump has said. She’s a reliable Dem, so if she’s ripping on Whatshername-Schultz, then it means Schultz is done in in the party.

          2. As opposed to your mancrush stomping his feet and refusing to debate because that eeeeevil Megyn Kelly asked him a tough question?

            He’s going to negotiate across from Putin, Merkel, Xi Jinping, and Mexico but his only recourse from a mean question is to take his ball and go home.

  24. All I know is that my one little vote for Gary Johnson has zero chance of getting Gary Johnson elected but somehow magically is 100% responsible for electing Hillary Clinton. At least according to the GOP, which has been running candidates for most of my life on the “at least he’s not a Democrat” platform. As if government has ever gotten any smaller and cheaper and less intrusive under the GOP – you pathetic little pig-fuckers couldn’t even kill the Ex-Im bank, which supplies money for Democrat-voting union members. When your Number #2 guy gets primaried out by a fucking school teacher with a campaign fund of whatever he dug out of the couch cushions it’s time to wake the fuck up.

    1. You are not responsible for electing Hillary. The country and the people who voted for her are. You are however responsible for not doing everything you could to stop her. What that responsibility means, is up to you.

      1. I live in a state she’s going to carry by 20 points regardless of what I do. Why *shouldnt* I vote my conscience?

        1. I’m in the same boat.

          1. If you really care.

      2. You are however responsible for not doing everything you could to stop her.

        Are you suggesting a woodchipper?

        1. Don’t you think putting John in a woodchipper is a little extreme?

  25. You are however responsible for not doing everything you could to stop her. What that responsibility means, is up to you.

    I see no reason to break my perfect record of not voting for (or against) anybody. And as for the Greek Chorus chanting, “If you didn’t vote, you can’t complain,” I have this to say:

    Fuck off. I bear no guilt in this shitshow. Don’t blame me, I voted for Kodos.

    I’ll complain ’til I’m blue in the face. I despised GWB. I never imagined it to be possible, but I despise his successor even more. Next up, somebody who will make the two of them look like the Good Old Days.

    1. Of course you can complain. You just have to understand no one has any reason to give a fuck. But if complaining makes you feel good, whatever works.

      1. I agree with John.

        I’ll be back after my shower.

    2. It is not mecessary to vote in order to have the right to complain.

      Paying taxes is reason enough.

  26. Hmmm, turd sandwich or giant douche? Which one is which?
    Screw it, I’m going with the taco that poops ice cream.

    1. So put you down for a Choco Taco?

  27. no one has any reason to give a fuck.

    Nobody gives a fuck about you, or your vote. That’s just how it is. But if you can got to work on Wednesday and say, “Woohoo, WE WON!” good for you. And if you mope in and say, “Well at least I did my best to keep her out of the White house,” that’s okay, too.

    Nobody ever ran for office by promising to leave me the fuck alone.

    1. Of course they didn’t. And that is why though you may not be interested in who is running, I can assure you that they are interested in you. So, pretending they are not and that the result doesn’t matter doesn’t change the fact that it does.

    2. I already have that Wednesday scheduled off, as I plan on spending that Tuesday night getting drunk and stoned with hookers.

  28. Sunday navel-gazing at the Times:

    Does that mean The Times should write off conservatives and make a hard play for the left and perhaps center left? I hope that question is not on the table. It would change everything about what the paper is and the force of its journalism.

    Imagine what would be missed by journalists who felt no pressing need to see the world through others’ eyes. Imagine the stories they might miss, like the groundswell of isolation that propelled a candidate like Donald Trump to his party’s nomination. Imagine a country where the greatest, most powerful newsroom in the free world was viewed not as a voice that speaks to all but as one that has taken sides.

    Or has that already happened?

    ” Imagine a country where the greatest, most powerful newsroom in the free world was viewed not as a voice that speaks to all but as one that has taken sides. Or has that already happened?”

    How droll.

    I like how she went out into the newsroom and asked the writers and editors if they’re “biased”. The unanimous reply? Nope.

  29. And the commenters come through:

    Barry Wolfe Dallas 22 hours ago
    The Times job is to be intelligent. If that sounds liberal, too bad.

    QED, moterfuckers!

    1. It’s just annoying how intelligent liberals are! It’s not easy being dumb, gosh.

  30. CNN sources say Debbie Wasserman will be gone by the end of the day:

    “A Hillary Clinton source expects Wasserman Schultz to be gone by the end of the day, while another Democratic source said President Barack Obama or a proxy for him may need to get involved and call Wasserman Schultz because her posture is that she was appointed by the president.”

    1. It’s like a catch 22. Leave DWS in her position, and you will angry the Bernie crowd. Fire her, and you will confirm that what Bernie supporters have been saying all the time: that the system is rigged against them.

    2. DWS just tweeted that she is stepping down as the head of the DNC – effective at of the end of the convention

    3. Wasserman Schultz announced Sunday she will resign in aftermath of email controversy

      I think its sort of funny how the media turned cory whatshisname into like a 3 month Epic-Drama because he pushed some reporter….

      ….and how they will turn the resignation of DWS – the chair of the Democratic party – into a one day, quiet story that really doesn’t mean anything and we should all just move on, amirite?

      Nothing to see here.

  31. I must say, John, you have done a great job of showing why the two parties have their stranglehold on politics.

    If people voted for someone instead of against someone, if they followed their conscience instead of the crowd, if they didn’t see elections as a horse race where you must choose a winner, then things might change.

    But as long as people think like you, nothing will change.

    1. If only we lived on rainbow puppy island where the people banded together and all voted the way you wished.

      1. Way to intentionally ignore the point. Congrats. I give you ten points.

      2. What I wish is irrelevant. What they (the people) wish is what is relevant. But they don’t wish. No. They choose between a giant douche and a turd sandwich because people like you convince them that those are their only choices.

        Tony is very pragmatic. Disgustingly so. And in this case so are you. So this would be an opportunity for me to use my favorite moniker, but I choose to be civil.

        Have a nice day.

      3. I totally understand and support voting for the lesser of two evils. But Trump is just as bad as Hillary, and worse in some ways. I don’t trust him to nominate constitutionalist judges, so the SCOTUS thing is a wash.

  32. Al Davis 1 hour ago
    As Stephen Colbert succinctly noted, facts have a distinct liberal bias. If you can’t begin to distinguish facts from the nonsense spewing from the conservative noise machine perhaps you don’t belong in a legitimate news room. Considers the comment below from someone who claims this paper is just like Pravda for not reporting the “real” unemployment rate. Please consult any of the qualified economists roaming the halls at the Times to understand what that is all about. Or just recall the outrage from people on the right about the government “cooking the books” when unemployment began to drop under Obama. In short you simply cannot take these protests of bias seriously when we live in alternate realities where science and statistics are just another form of opinion to the other side.

    1. Al Davis was crazy. Now, he’s just dead.

    2. statistics are just another form of opinion to the other side

      By Zeus, the projection.

  33. na here 1 hour ago
    I think the Times’ coverage is not liberal, but neo-liberal. Consider:

    1. Soft handling of illegal immigration with a blanket refusal to consider the cost to our society. Or, that the scale of it represents corporate welfare
    2. No coverage of the lack of stable living-wage jobs in large swaths of the country due to outsourcing and immigration (legal and illegal). Particularly, the effect on the most vulnerable citizens, including African-Americans.
    3. Inadequate and biased coverage of the Bernie Sanders campaign
    4. No hard-hitting reporting of Wall Street excesses – either before or after the 2008 crash. The same goes for Silicon Valley and its excesses.
    5. Promotion of diversity that borders on fostering divisiveness (I am not white)
    6. No critical treatment of trade deals, particularly with China.

    What draws me to the NYT is not so much the reporting and certainly not the op-ed pages. Rather, it is the comments sections which are thoughtful and thought-provoking, and illuminate and inform better than the comment sections of any other newspaper or magazine.

    1. This person must not have looked at YouTube comments.

    2. And, of course, “neo-liberal” is just a code word for “things I don’t like”, much like “fascism” was a generation ago.

      1. “Neo-liberal” is something of a catch-all term for populist ignoramuses.

        They need a label to call shit they don’t like, but they’re entirely ignorant of (and disinterested in) any actual political theory other than I WANTS MAH STUFF, so “neo-liberal” serves as a new “democrat shit i don’t like”-buzzword counterpoint to “neo-conservative” – which is, “Republicanish shit i don’t like”

  34. What are the odds that the new head of the DNC will be less competent than DWS?

    1. From Politico: Donna Brazile, a Democratic Party stalwart, is expected to run the DNC through the election, according to multiple sources briefed on the plan. Brazile, who briefly served as chair in 2011, is a CNN contributor, and must forgo that contract to take the reins of the DNC. And she’s still subject to a party vote this week in Philadelphia.

      And of course Politico fails to mention that Brazile worked for the Bill Clinton campaign.

      1. I’m surprised by this. Black woman does beat mere woman, but they really needed to go for black lesbian woman to leave nothing to doubt.

  35. Wait- the Olympics aren’t totally awesome?

    The Olympics themselves are the catastrophe: an unwieldy cash-and-corruption-engorged monster that descends on the host country with a ravenous maw and leaves a swathe of human and economic casualties in its wake, from Athens to Beijing to London to Sochi to Rio, and presents a terrorism target that requires a massive security effort to defend against. At what point will world capitals stop participating in this folly? The answer may be sooner rather than later as more and more cities conclude it’s just not worth it.

    According to a report issued this week by investigators from Oxford University’s business school, the Olympics over the past decade have cost an average of $8.9 billion , with an average cost overrun of 156 percent. Not another megaproject project in the world has a record of such irresponsible and suspiciously large cost overruns, no bridge, tunnel, or dam. The report notes, with emphasis, “All Games, without exception, have cost overrun. For no other type of megaproject is this the case.”

    But- civic pride!

    1. They must not have looked at California’s high-speed rail.

    2. And FIFA might be even more corrupt than the IOC.

    3. They really should have chosen better mascots than a Zika mosquito, a tapeworm, and a parasitic amoeba.

    4. more and more Western, democratically-run cities conclude it’s just not worth it

      Fixed. I suspect there is no shortage of third-world despots willing to swim around in all that graft.

  36. A 50 state landslide victory is now not out of the question. I hope President Trump appoints GayJay as Ambassador to Libya.

  37. they will turn the resignation of DWS – the chair of the Democratic party – into a one day, quiet story that really doesn’t mean anything and we should all just move on, amirite?

    Look, she just decided, after a couple of days of quiet contemplation, that she’d like to spend more time with her family. Can’t you respect that?

  38. If your person doesn’t get enough votes, you lose. I don’t want to hear it.

    And no one knows losing every election and not bitching about it like we do

  39. OT =

    there’s an interesting interview up @ “The War College” podcast w/ retired Col. Andrew Bacevich, author of recent book, “”America’s War for the Greater Middle East: A Military History

    Its worth listening to if you are into that sort of thing.

    He basically helps clarify questions like =

    – why do we give a shit about the middle east in the first place? why did we start, and why do we care now? What is our strategy? what WAS it? why did it change? etc.

    The answer is mostly that “we don’t have a good reason anymore, or a strategy”…

    …. but that we let ourselves get into this foreign-policy mess largely because of a series of events that began in the mid-70s*, and were amplified by the end of the cold-war, and (false) victory in the Gulf in 1993

    (*he says 1980, but i think “The Carter Doctrine” should itself be put in context of the Islamic revival, the oil-crisis, iranian revolution, etc)

    Its nothing super-new – but its a clearer view of history than i’ve seen summarized before.

    The main problem many seem to have is pretending that US policy began out of the blue with the invasion of Iraq; or perhaps with the end of Gulf-1, or the cold-war. It is really rooted in a *sequence* that started in the 1970s, and which has resulted in this view of the US military having become the ‘proxy peacekeeper’

    1. …. and “proxy peacekeeper” in fact really means, “War-babysitter”/”perpetual war-instigator”.

      His conclusion is one many libertarians would buy into = the US should get the fuck out permanently.
      (more or less- I presume he’d keep the 5th fleet in the gulf regardless)

      Not so unilaterally as some might like, but more along the lines of “sit down with the Saudis and the Turks and the Iranians and say = Look, we’re not doing this shit anymore. Go ahead and nuke each other to death if you want. We’re not interested in propping up your shitty states. You all need to figure out your own balance of power and stop leaning on us to enforce it.”

      I don’t think his conception is at all realistic, but it needs to be articulated at least before other people can start to suggest that maybe its the right general direction in which to move.

  40. The Iraqi govt is digging a trench around Fallujah to prevent its recapture by ISIS. No word on whether they plan turning it into a moat filled with alligators.

    In other news, German authorities are describing the machete attack by a Syrian refugee as a “crime of passion”, which I suppose is technically true. Hey, at least they didn’t blame it on climate change.

    1. The Iraqi govt is digging a trench around Fallujah to prevent its recapture by ISIS.

      I presume the next step is to repopulate the city with shiites.

      which is really just taking a page out of Saddam’s playbook

    2. They’re going to build a wall around Fallujah and make us pay for it.

      Shit, that’s supposed to be a joke but it’s probably true.

    3. The Iraqi govt is digging a trench around Fallujah to prevent its recapture by ISIS.

      I hope they’re making ISIS pay for it.

      1. Ugh, thunder stolen.

  41. Surprise!

    Michael R. Bloomberg, who bypassed his own run for the presidency this election cycle, will endorse Hillary Clinton in a prime-time address at the Democratic convention and make the case for Mrs. Clinton as the best choice for moderate voters in 2016, an adviser to Mr. Bloomberg said.

    The news is an unexpected move from Mr. Bloomberg, who has not been a member of the Democratic Party since 2000; was elected the mayor of New York City as a Republican; and later became an independent.

    But it reflects Mr. Bloomberg’s increasing dismay about the rise of Donald J. Trump and a determination to see that the Republican nominee is defeated.

    Yeah, nobody saw that coming.

    1. Isn’t he an atheist Jew?

      1. Why are you mentioning stuff from the previous news cycle, this is a *new* news cycle as of…right about now.

      2. Who ?

        Bernie or Bloomberg ?

        Yes ! For the win.

    2. Bloomberg is a moderate?

  42. Is aftertouch Tulpa?

  43. Will the disgruntled and disenfranchised turn to Gary Johnson? The latest polls don’t look good. He’s fallen from his high of 13% down to 7%.

    Maybe after a few more polls he’ll start coming back but, seriously, I think we’ve seen “peak Johnson”.

  44. “Binary choices…” Like being raped or not being raped.

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